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THE BIBLE.-LOW SPIRITS.

out. Lately, I was a sixpenny private ; and, a miser“able soldier enough. Now I march to the campaign “a starving cadet, a little more conspicuously wretched. “I am ashamed of all this; for though I do not want “ bravery for the warfare of life, I could wish, like “some other soldiers, to have as much fortitude or “ cunning as to dissemble or conceal my cowardice. “ It seems impossible (says Mr. Lockhart) to doubt “that Burns had, in fact, lingered in Edinburgh, in “the hope that, to use a vague but sufficiently ex“pressive phrase, something would be done for him. “ He visited and re-visited a farm, talked and wrote “ scholarly and wisely about having a fortune at “the plough-tail,' and so forth; but all this while “nourished, and assuredly it would have been most “strange if he had not, the fond dream, that the admi “ration of his country would 'ere long present itself in “some solid and tangible shape. Hisillness and confine“ment gave him leisure to concentrate his imagination " on the darker side of his prospects; and the letters " which we have quoted, may teach those who envy the “ powers and the fame of Genius, to pause for a “ moment over the annals of literature, and think what “superior capabilities of misery have been in the great “majority of cases, interwoven with the possession of “those very talents, from which all but their possessors “ derive unmingled gratification.”Lockhart, pp. 181-2.

As it is with painters, Burns required a model, and said he preferred to have other ladies than his wife to sit for the poetical portrait. Nevertheless his Jean served the purpose as well as either Miss Alexander (the lass of Ballochmyle), or Mary Campbell, or Clarinda, or Chloris, or Jessy Lewars (the modest lassie, his wife's cousin), who kindly ministered to him during his last days at Dumfries. Some of his letters to Clarinda, chiefly written about this time, and obtained by an exchange of her's to Burns, give a curious view of his character. Her maiden name was Agnes Craig, grandniece of Maclaurin, the mathematician, and cousin

German of Lord Craig. Her husband's name was McLehosema man says Chambers—devoid of “just “ moral feeling, from whom she was obliged to live “ separate in almost indigence with her young children, “ her husband being in the West Indies.” She was about the age of Burns, had some poetical talent, and he praised and corrected some of her verses. They first met in the winter of 1787, while he was in Edinburgh preparing a second edition of his poems for the press. He was at that time under the erroneous impression that his irregular marriage had been dissolved. After their first meeting, the accident already mentioned confined him to his room, and their sentimental love was continued by correspondence, and then by interviews at Clarinda's House in presence of others or alone. She told him more truth about religion than he appears to have heard from any other acquaintance. She prescribed the boundary line of their intercourse, which was observed, and they played at lovers across the border—a dangerous game. Clarinda was fascinated, Sylvander charmed. The evenings spent in his most agreeable society were the happiest in her unhappy life, and such wonderfnl congeniality did she find in him, as she never found in any other man, not excepting her loving husband, who could not be said to have lost affections which he did not possess, and took no pains to secure. How far this delightful interchange of sentiment, this fervent platonism was prudent, proper, or justifiable is another question. Some writers have not spared that deserted, disconsolate woman, notwithstanding the difficulty of resigning the companionship which so gladdened her desolation. Burns' letters to her are generally considered to be strange and unsatisfactory, professing the ardent love of a devoted admirer. But at length having settled his account with Creech, the bookseller, and laurel-crowned, and with more money than he ever had before or after, he went off to Ayrshire to be heartily welcomed, and with the permission of Armour, and the cordial consent of his daughter, his marriage to her was confirmed and com

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pleted before a Justice of Peace in Mr. Hamilton's office, at Mauchline. Of the five or six hundred pounds received from the sale of his poems, he gave two hundred to his brother Gilbert for farming purposes at Mossgiel.

He announced his marriage to his friend Mrs. Dunlop in June, 1788. “ Humanity, generosity, honest pride “ of character, justice to my own happiness for after “ life, so far as it could depend (which it surely will a “ great deal) on eternal peace; all these joined their “ warmest suffrages, their most powerful solicitations, “ with a rooted attachment to urge the step I have taken. “ Nor have I any reason on her part to repent it. I can fancy how, but have never seen where I could “have made a better choice. Come then, let me act. “ up to my favourite motto, that glorious passage in

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“On reason build resolve

That column of true majesty in man.'”

When Clarinda heard that her poet's vows had been as easily broken as the green withs of Delilah were by Samson, and that awaking from his midsummer's night's dream he had recovered his own true love, she wrote to him an indignant letter. His character was but little known to her if she believed that he could keep himself disengaged for her for any long time; but the sudden change which had come over the spirit of his dream, and which put an end to hers, shocked and surprised her. They exchanged several letters of reproach and of apology in a very different tone from their former corespondence. About the end of the year 1791, her husband invited her to join him in the West Indies. Then Burns having occasion to pay his last visit to Edinburgh, they met as friends on the 6th of December. On the 27th he wrote in reply to a letter of hers, and enclosed a song composed for Thomson's collection, the fourth verse of which Lord Byron pre

German of Lord Craig. Her husband's name was McLehosema man says Chambers—devoid of “just “ moral feeling, from whom she was obliged to live “ separate in almost indigence with her young children, “ her husband being in the West Indies.” She was about the age of Burns, had some poetical talent, and he praised and corrected some of her verses. They first met in the winter of 1787, while he was in Edinburgh preparing a second edition of his poems for the press. He was at that time under the erroneous impression that his irregular marriage had been dissolved. After their first meeting, the accident already mentioned confined him to his room, and their sentimental love was continued by correspondence, and then by interviews at Clarinda's House in presence of others or alone. She told him more truth about religion than he appears to have heard from any other acquaintance. She prescribed the boundary line of their intercourse, which was observed, and they played at lovers across the border-a dangerous game. Clarinda was fascinated, Sylvander charmed. The evenings spent in his most agreeable society were the happiest in her unhappy life, and such wonderfnl congeniality did she find in him, as she never found in any other man, not excepting her loving husband, who could not be said to have lost affections which he did not possess, and took no pains to secure. How far this delightful interchange of sentiment, this fervent platonism was prudent, proper, or justifiable is another question. Some writers have not spared that deserted, disconsolate woman, notwithstanding the difficulty of resigning the companionship which so gladdened her desolation. Burns' letters to her are generally considered to be strange and unsatisfactory, professing the ardent love of a devoted admirer. But at length having settled his account with Creech, the bookseller, and laurel-crowned, and with more money than he ever had before or after, he went off to Ayrshire to be heartily welcomed, and with the permission of Armour, and the cordial consent of his daughter, his marriage to her was confirmed and com

LIFE AT ELLISLAND.

On those ambrosial hill pastures of Parnassus, there was no fit fodder for Nithsdale kine, and both his warm heart and strong sense told him that his Jean was a far better wife for the farmer at Ellisland than any poetess would have been. The higher education of women up there might include Milton, Shakspere, Bacon, and ornithology, but the rearing of pigs and poultry, churning and cheese making it could not comprehend. His Jean was ,equal to all that, and as for the poetry, she could be his muse down in the vale, and by Nith's flowing stream, and with such inspiration Burns could make verses to flow like a river from day to day, and from age to age. His kind landlord, Mr. Miller, allowed him to choose his farm, but dreading failure, Burns obtained an appointmentas exciseman, with a small salary to fall back upon in case of a reverse. The arrangement was not an advantage; it interfered with that strict attention to the farm which was necessary to make it prosper. It was fatiguing and harassing, and incongruous with agriculture and with poetry, to have to watch and pursue smugglers, and inspect their open or concealed stores of grocery, tobacco, and spirituous liquors, and still more to ride two hundred miles a week in that sad vocation, which in those days was not favourable to steady and temperate habits.

Lord Cockburn, who was born about 20 years after Burns, and long survived him, states in “Memorials of his Time” that nothing was more common than for gentlemen who had dined with ladies and meant to rejoin them to get drunk. “To get drunk in a tavern seemed "to be considered as a natural if not an intended consequence of going to one. Swearing was thought “ right, and the making of a gentleman. And tried by “this test, nobody who had not seen them could now be “ made to believe how many gentlemen there were.”

“ In the army it was universal by officers towards “ soldiers, and far more frequent than is now credible, “by masters towards servants. The naval chaplain “ justified his cursing the sailors because it made them

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